Chicken recipes are a dime a dozen. But Queer Eye’s resident culinary expert (and author of the new cookbook Antoni in the Kitchen) Antoni Porowski has a way of shaking things up. Lo and behold, his recipe for chile-maple roast chicken is both easy and impressive.
“A roast chicken is a blank slate,” Porowski writes. “Once you have the technique down, you can apply any flavors you like.” As for his version? It relies on just a few ingredients (chili powder, maple syrup and, of course, butter) for maximum flavor.
“This recipe came about when I lived in Brooklyn,” he continues, “and was studying acting and cooking for my roommates, PJ and Ben, also fledgling creatives. Using the only spices we had in the larder, plus the insanely good maple syrup my father sends me from Vermont, I made this ad hoc and utterly delicious dish. It’s now my numero uno.”
Go ahead, twist our arm. We’re already planning to make it tonight.
Excerpted from Antoni in the Kitchen © 2019 by Antoni Porowski with Mindy Fox. Photography © 2019 by Paul Brissman. Reproduced by permission of Rux Martin Books/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.
4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons ground dried chipotle chile (or ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper)
One 4½- to 5-pound whole chicken
½ small onion, unpeeled, cut into wedges
5 garlic cloves, gently smashed but not peeled
Freshly ground black pepper
1. With a rack positioned in the middle, preheat the oven to 425°F. In a small bowl, stir together the butter, maple syrup, chili powder and chipotle powder or cayenne until smooth.
2. Pull off and discard any excess fat around the cavity and neck of the chicken, then pat the chicken thoroughly dry inside and out. Season the cavity with salt. Squeeze the lemon juice into the cavity and toss in the lemon half, along with the onion and garlic. Starting at the edge of the cavity, slip a finger under the skin of each breast and loosen the skin from the meat of both the breasts and thighs, then spread half of the maple butter mixture under the skin. Rub the remaining butter on top of the skin, then season with 2 teaspoons salt and a generous pinch of pepper.
3. Place the bird, breast-side up, in a roasting pan or 9-by-13-inch baking dish and roast for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350°F and continue roasting for 1 hour 15 minutes to 1 hour 25 minutes more, basting occasionally with the juices, until the juices run clear when the thigh is pierced with a fork (or an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 165°F).
4. Baste the chicken with the juices. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes before carving and serving.